When it comes to background checks and firearms, gun shows, their loop holes, and states’ resistance to correct such procedures have come under fire. Yet, background checks are not solely performed regarding the purchase of firearms. Gun owners, as this recent Nevada instance indicates, may go through the screening again, and possibly have their weapons confiscated.
Yet, in Reno, where this issue takes place, about 36 gun owners, over the past year, were screened, but when their background checks failed to be satisfactory, the weapons were not removed. If the cartoonish incompetence of Reno 911 seems like fodder exclusively for television, consider this scenario. In northern Nevada, the U.S. Bureau of Alcohol, Tobacco, Firearms and Explosives (ATF) no longer has agents to do the necessary procedure. The Nevada Department of Public Safety, which conducted the background checks, says it followed procedure, sending letters to the Reno ATF office in all instances.
However, most ATF agents transferred out of the area as the result of a disagreement with local federal prosecutors, started by a letter from the U.S. assistant attorney. The letter stated that ATF cases in northern Nevada would not be prosecuted until certain issues were resolved.
As SFGate.com reported, there’s no word if agents in nearby metropolitan areas are being called into Reno to remove the weapons. The Division of Records and Technology, in the area, is looking into a possible solution, while the San Francisco ATF branch is additionally considering a possible solution.
Gun background checks increased since the Tucson, Ariz. shooting, with the FBI seeing a 33 percent leap in early 2011. At one point, a mental health component was considered for such firearm background checks, but “mentally unfit” and state records were seen as divisive factors that could lessen the accuracy of such screenings.